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[captioning made possible by nbc universal] chris: your taxes are going up. and you won't get the liver transplant. when do you want to die? will this freak out the congress. is this just too personal for a lot of us. if enough republicans will join democrats in requiring every adult to get health insurance, is that a triumph in itself. couldn't the president say he has just one? and crazy like a fox. is the opposition exploiting that country. are screwballs calling obama kenyan doing the party's dirty
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work? and nahria o'donnell and yuge gene robinson. and jennifer loven and howard fineman. present's experiencing rumors about health care. this seemed to throw the president a bit off balance at a town hall. >> i have heard lots of rumors going around. i have been told there's a clause in this that everyone is mead care age will be visited and told to decide how they wish to die. this bothers me a great deal. i like you to promise me this is not in this bill. >> the -- i guarantee you, first of all, we don't have enough
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government workers to send -- to talk to everybody. i think that the only thing that play have been proposed in some of the bills, and i actually think this is a good thing, is that it makes it easier for people to fill out a living will. chris: this week's "wall street journal" has a dramatic finding on what the president's persuasion has accomplished. the poll suggested that people that changed their minds since april had decided reform would make their own future care worse. there's no positive move whatever in people saying their personal care would improve or even stay the same. some republicans are picking up on those doubts. >> you could have life and death decisions by people who are not elected. those decisions regarding rationing of health care and delay and denial of care is the most fundamental decision to you and your family and mine as well. chris: there's talk about
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rationing and rumormongering, since april has turned people against the president's push. >> barack obama was fabulous at selling himself as a candidate. this is a terrible sales job so far on health can care. here's why. he decided to 0 fight this on conservative turf by saying this will reform the system and save money. the problems are two-fold, they didn't have a man to specifically say how they were going to do that. and number two, he missed the opportunity to make the appeal to community in the great american spirit of cooperation that you need to sell something like this. so they didn't think it through properly from the beginning. chris: you cover this for the associated press at the white house. the white house has been so good before. why doesn't he sell the positives? we're all in this together. you don't want sick children in the classroom. it is better if we're all insured. it is the defensive thing. what happened here? >> he's gone through three
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phases. it is muddled up. this is going to fix the economy, if we fix health care. then he turd to the cost issue and he went on and on about how we would save money, because he thought that's what people worried about. remember the poll, people worried about the deficit spending and increasing. he thought that would get through and then republicans have come in quite effectively with this government takeover of health care and all of a sudden obama is on the defensive. he's not yet latched on to an argument that says cogeantly to an average american, what does this mean for you? he tries but doesn't get there. >> he got everybody in default. do no harm. cowboy, let me drive my own car and have my own health insurance. >> he let the opponents get out in front of him on the argument that if you already have health insurance, this is bad for you. you put your health insurance in jeopardy. had comes back with a logical argument, which is your health
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insurance is already in jeopardy. it is costing to much, there your employer is changing it every year and it is costing you more money and play have to give it up entirely. but that hench is in the getting through. it was drowned out by the other message. one moral is maybe you should sell things based on the reason you're doing it and the reason it is being done. and it is immoral for a -- for the united states of america to have tens of billions of people without health insurance and adequate health care. that's a bad thing. that is not american. >> the three big buzz words are cost, quality and coverage. we know some trillion dollar plan will probably cover more people. will it decrease costs? the c.b.o. says no. people say, why would we do that? that's not clear. in fact that have private insurance already, have said in
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the "wall street journal" poll, they think it is going to get worse, there's a public auction out there and maybe they're a private company will water down their insurance man and i might say, my company is not great, so maybe i'll go on the public plan. that's how everybody is thinking. that's why this has gotten away from the president. he's got to do a better job about selling why it is worth this. >> he's got a complicated argument. the republicans came in with a simple bumper sticker. government takeover of health care and everybody hates it. and he adds, things get worse if we don't do anything, how do you grab on to that? >> people like medicare and that's government control of health care. >> it fits on a bumper sticker. chris: insurance company that is do provide coverage cover a lot of things. >> here's what happened. i look at this. they told him, initially, they meaning peter or zag, the head of the office and management and
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budget and other people thinking this through. mr. president, you can do it all. it is relatively painless because we'll totally reform it and woe won't attack anybody. barack obama doesn't like attack politician. what this is about is the insurance industry. they played a absolutely game. at beginning the industry said we want to sit at the table with you. we're offering you $100 billion worth of savings but we don't want a public option. so -- the president went slow. and let congress put the bills together. the problem is he said, here's the problem, but we're going to let those guys fix it. so he didn't have anything to sell and didn't want to impact the insurance companies. now late in the game. it is relatively late in the fame, he's attacking the insurance companies because this is all about regulation and insurance. chris: poem say he's a cheerleader and we need a quarterback. you can't tell congress what we want them to do, you god to lead them. he's going on vacation, martha's
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vineyard, elite place. is this a problem for him to be out of action in august? >> i think it might be. there's this bumper sticker mentality now on the other side of the debate. he's got to get that message, his message toned down to something simple and easy to understand. he can't do that if he's not around to do it. >> it is congress that is going on vacation first. they haven't gotten -- people are saying, what the heck is going on? chris: we know congress is people, they have wives and husbands. they go on vacation. they hang around upper middle class people that have these concerns. they won't hear from the needy. they won't hear from the people that want something done, will they? >> i think that's a, that's a valid point. but they will be hearing from people -- look all americans are concerned about health care. alamericans want -- want it to be better and want it to be sustainable and want to know it'll be there when they get old and gray.
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and now the president says, we'll deliver. what he needs is his bump sticker. he doesn't are it. >> he doesn't have a plan. he's identified the problem, i think not in the best way politically. he should have made it a case of the insurance companies are robbing you bliped. that's the core political thing. he hasn't done that because he doesn't like that kind of politician. he identified this bigger nebulous problem. he doesn't have a plan specifically to answer it. so the opponents are pecking it together like a bunch of ducks. >> that was the way to do it, which was not to go back to the problems of clinton administration and let congress. chris: most people here are thinking something will pass. one measure is whether the president will get something big enough to be called historic, a historic victory. he set health care out there as his major going goal this year. we asked 12 of our regulars, at the end of the year, will obama be seen as a change agent? in the same they say f.d.r. was
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and ronald reagan was. and a bare majority, believe he'll end in that category. seven say yes. and five say no. and do you think he'll have something to sign and it'll be historically significant? >> lots of democrats are giving him problems on the plan but they could if necessary pass a pared down bill. so he could have a signing ceremony and victory. chris: you're with it is historic. >> we'll stick with where we are. here's the thing. all of us think there will be a bill signed by the end of the year. and there will be something in this that the obama presidency will be able to claim as historic. i think it'll be. they'll lay down a marker
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saying, whatever the details are that everybody somehow is entitled to -- or required to have -- coverage in america. that'll be historic thing. chris: everybody has got to be involved and sign on to it. here's my question. will they do something big enough this year, the democrat and the president, that they can campaign next year on it? >> yes. chris: will they get sometng done they can practicing about next year? >> yes, but i don't know that it'll change the lives of americans. >> yes. >> yes. chris: so after all of this -- this here -- okay. before we break, one thing swirling out there is this crazy idea pushed by people called berthers that president obama wasn't elected president because he wasn't born in america. here's g. gordon liddy on hardball. >> if he wasn't born here and never gone through a naturalization process that you
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know of. not that i know of therefore, he's here illegally and you say he's undocumented alien. soe should be picked up? chris: in fact, take a look at this, there was this birth announcement in the hon hue lieu newspaper back in 1961, baby born to the obama's locally. jon stewart had fun with the idea that somebody in 1961 conknived to make it look like obama was born in hawaii so he could be eligible to be president someday. >> here's how it goes, you want to destroy america from the inside, but you can't because you're a ferner. so first, you got to find yourself a good old american willing to reproduce with you. then you have that child on foreign soil, while simultaneously, placing the birth announcement for this child in one of our fringe
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states local newspapers. then -- then -- hold on. you wait. until this baby is a middle-aged man. now the trap iset. you just sit back and let that child go out and win the election for president of the united states. chris: when we come back? how do we explain this crazy stuff. just nuts or something republicans actually like.
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chris: i hate to teach politician to the experts, but it is fun.
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chris: welcome back, six months after president obama's inauguration, racial comments from the far right have worked their way from below the surface to open season. take the birthers that are on the internet and tv that say that obama's birth certificate is phony andnd he was born in kenya and the week-long flap ompe the prossor's arrest, was a way to push this stuff about the president. >> this president i think that exposed himself as a guy over and over and over again who has a deep-seated hatred for white people or the white culture. i don't know what it is. >> i think he's a racial opportunist, he took that moment, used health care conference that was a debacle basically and took this story, which is really a local parochial law enforcement story to try and insure some sort of moment of his racial authenticity. >> this is something that
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diminishes the the office of the presidency. it is all about him. it is all about him trying to say, and illustrate that he -- can bring about the end to this racial divide, when he is the one that caused all of this. chris: is this dangerous, this flapry, this nonsense talk. >> we talked in the past about dog whistle politician. this is train whistle politician. nothing subtle about it or quiet about it. yeah, it is about race and it is -- something that that opponents of the president are exploiting, either for political gain or for personal profit. ed, you know, we should have expected such things, the first african-american president. i'm not terribly surprised that this would happen. it is in the, you know, it is unfortunate. but it is going to happen.
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chris: i don't know -- i don't want to build this up beyond a crazy level. the polls show, at least the new poll out i just saw, it is based in the south where a majority of people don't know he was born in america or say they don't know. the rest of the country is minuscule, this issue. maybe they a point about the racial piece. is this openi the door to the crazies? >> i don't think so. here's the reason why. they play be naive but this is their belief. all these things were aired in the campaign. they weren't aired in the high-profile way they are now, from -- in quite the arena they are now. he won. he won despite all of this, being an undercurrent throughout the campaign. they look at that and say we're going to face this over and over. it is going to come up and go away and go away. that's the way it is for the first african-american president. chris: let's talk politician. we're going to have elections.
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are the republicans using this to sort of build the undercurrent of passion against this president. they play not admit it, but are they using it? >> you bet. i use that phrase because i returned from alaska where sarah palin said quit making things up, a message to the media. chris: do you feel it up there? >> yes, i do. i think there are forces out there that are doing harm to the country. people are looking for a way to delegitimatize barack obama, when they can do it by maligning his race or birth, even though he was born in america, their way to delegitimatize him. it is a dark undercurrent. the thing that concerns me is that rather than focusing on things that unite us that people are concentrating on things that divide us. >> there's a trend within 40 years or so, there's not going to be a majority in the country. everybody is going to be a minority.
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and -- i think what -- what some of the rebel rousers are doing is playing on that fear. so we -- look at barack obama, look at sonia sotomayor. they're going to protectheir interests and who is looking out if your interests, a mr. and mrs. white person. chris: bill buckley he said no anti-simentism, none of this bircher stuff. you're out the movement. is there a way to say, you're not fair. he's an american like us, stop the talk. >> if the conservative movement today was like the conservative movement then, you could do that. but not now. and there is a straight line now that i think about it, from the birthers to the birchers. there's -- part of the american political psyche that is the underside. we talk about being united and being in this together, but we also fear them, the immigrant,
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the stranger. chris: the mob at the feat. >> that's part of the american mentality. gina is right about the long-term demographics. but republican strategists are not looking at that, here look acing at the 2010 elections. this is low turnout elections. in low turnout locations, those that are highly motivated show up and the anger could work and they're willing to let it happen. chris: scoops and vo: since 2006, walmart has sold over 260 million compact fluorescent light bulbs. saving our customers over 7 billion dollars on their electric bills. save money. live better. walmart.
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it also brings first-class entertainment, with picture quality pc world calls "razor sharp," america's top-rated internet and crystal clear phone, all for just $79.99 a month for the first six months. you can also get channel variety cable can't match. plus, additional packages are available with over 115 hd channels and over 15,000 titles on demand per month. what else does fios bring that cable doesn't? how about easy-to-use on screen widgets that offer instant updates on local traffic, news, weather and more. call the verizon center for customers with disabilities at 800-974-6006 tty/v today to order fios tv, internet and phone for just $79.99 a month for the first six months. at's like getting all three amazing fios services for the price of two. and now get even faster internet speeds.
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plus, ask about our free wifi at thousands of hotspots nationwide. to get amazing tv, our fastest internet ever, and phone at this incredible low price, call the verizon center for customers with disabilities at 800-974-6006 tty/v today. sof every eligible associate's salary to their 401(k) andge profit sharing plan. ...even if the associate didn't contribute a dime... ...making good jobs even better. save money. live better. walmart.ri chris: norah tell me something i don't know. >> i'm back from alaska. and sarah palin's closest advisor is herbs. she doesn't advise the press people what she's doing. it is extraordinary. >> interesting poll from the national journal folks, in this economic downturn, they asked who is optimistic about the economy? turns outinorities are way,
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way more optimistic about the future of -- about their children's future than whites are. >> amazing. jennifer. >> just a number, over august we talked about how the president needs to be out there making a pitch, less than half a dozen town halls and appearances on health care. i wonder if he'll regret that. >> we think barack obama brought a lot of attenon to washington when he arrived here. you haven't seen anything yet, because dann brown the author of the da vinci code is out with his new book next month. all the intrigue and the symbols and the capital building, you name it, it is going to be a worldwide phenomena here. >> hardball too? >> i don't know. chris: more cases after this. >> secret messages from hardball. chris: the monument. when we come back, this week's big question. will the president avoid com meantingng on racial issues in e future.
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chris: welcome back. the big question this week. in the future will president obama stay away from commenting on issues involving race? >> no. >> no. >> no. >> no he won't, it is in his
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soul. chris: that's the show, thanks for watching. [captioning made possible by nbc universal] (announcer) when verizon brings 100% fiber optics straight to your home it also brings first-class entertainment, with picture quality pc world calls "razor sharp," america's top-rated internet and crystal clear phone, all for just $79.99 a month for the first six months. you can also get channel variety cable can't match. plus, additional packages are available with over 115 hd channels and over 15,000 titles on demand per month. what else does fios bring that cable doesn't? how about easy-to-use on screen widgets that offer instant updates on local traffic, news, weather and more. call the verizon center for customers with disabilities at 800-974-6006 tty/v today to order fios tv, internet and phone for just $79.99 a month for the first six months. that's like getting all three amazing fios services for the price of two. and now get even faster internet speeds. plus, ask about our free wifi at thousands of hotspots nationwide. to get amazing tv, our fastest internet ever,
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and phone at this incredible low price, call the verizon center for customers with disabilities at 800-974-6006 tty/v today.

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The Chris Matthews Show
NBC August 2, 2009 10:00am-10:30am EDT

News/Business. (2009) New. (CC)

TOPIC FREQUENCY America 7, Us 4, Disabilities 4, Sarah Palin 2, Obama 2, Jennifer 1, Birchers 1, Dann Brown 1, Jon Stewart 1, Martha 1, Bill Buckley 1, Sonia Sotomayor 1, G. Gordon Liddy 1, Jennifer Loven 1, Robinson 1, Howard Fineman 1, United States Of America 1, Ronald Reagan 1, Nahria O'donnell 1, Associated Press 1
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